I Dream In Tyria

I never played the original ‘Guild Wars’ and knew practically nothing about Guild Wars 2 until just before it went on general release a few weeks ago. I had noticed that a good number of my kin (double figures) were off playing the head-start, and I was intrigued when some pretty stunning screenshots started appearing on our kin website. A bit of research on my part then followed; in the end it was the ‘look’ plus the lack of a monthly subscription that persuaded me to give GW2 a go. I therefore ordered the basic edition for GB£34.99 from Amazon, and two days later I was off.

GW2 - very photogenic

GW2 – very photogenic

That was two weeks ago. I now have a level 19 Elementalist and am thoroughly enjoying the game. First, it’s very pretty and atmospheric. There is a goodly amount of voice acting too, which I like (but not to the SWTOR level), and great music too.

Apart from the central story, there are no set quests and absolutely no quest chaining – for me, this is a huge bonus after the likes of LoTRO and SWTOR. Group events occur in each area that you discover and you are free to join in – or not. The more you help out with a given event, the better your reward in terms of coinage, experience points, etc.

The game world is easy to get around via the use of way-points (once you discover them) and everything has a fine degree of polish. Yes, there are some bugs, but no showstoppers that I’ve found, to date. Having said that, I’ve only clocked up 25-odd hours of play so I might be being premature with that statement!

As Lothi intimates in her recent post, the vistas are amazingly detailed and it is well worth the effort needed to root each and every one of them out. The ‘puzzle’ nature of some of them really adds to the game too. In fact, on a couple of occasions, I’ve spent the best part of an hour figuring an individual one out (although maybe that says more about my lack of skill!).

The Grove

The Grove

Crafting is still a bit of mystery to me. I’ve so far tried my hand at tailoring and jewelry making, but I’m finding materials quite hard to come by. I’m also finding the same issue as I found in LoTRO – in that by the time you’ve acquired enough raw materials to craft items of a particular level, those same items are no longer any use to you because you’ve out-levelled them. Maybe I’m just slow at gathering, but it feels like crafting is only useful for lower levels alts. So a ‘Meh’ there.

Much of the experience, both in terms of gaining levels and in terms of simply enjoying the game, in GW2, seems to revolve around exploration. As mentioned above, we have vistas and waypoints to discover, and each area has other points of interest too. However, this leads me to worry about replay-ability. With exploration being so key, once you’ve played through an area once, will you want to ‘explore’ through it again? I’ll leave that question open because I honestly don’t know the answer as yet. Only time will tell, for me. For the time being, I’m just loving the journey and am in no hurry to worry about where I’m going or what I’ll do when I get there…

Caledon Forest

Caledon Forest


2 Responses to “I Dream In Tyria”

  1. Hi Corleth. Ark here, replayability depends on. The player if you set out to complete evry iota of each area, you may run in to that issue. The again it’s likely you won’t experience the same content in the same way each time with each profession. I’m personally choosing to keep the areas close to the race start in each case and moving through so that I pretty much guarantee myself a degree of unique and through as much as possible for each race I’ve chosen to play as each profession. This is what I am loving about it, this choice, and I am not exactly funnelled in to approaching each area identically. Play it your way. 🙂 then again, I had a go at WvWvW when everyone else when the to bed. You can practically level up in there etc….!

    • You make some good points there, Ark.

      I’m a bit of a completionist, by nature so my natural inclination, in all things, is to dot my ‘I’s and cross my ‘T’s. In terms of any computer game and its replayability, this trait can be a bit of a hindrance, as my urge to complete as much as possible, the first time though, can decrease my urge to replay.

      To a degree, GW2 encourages completionism, due to the way it downgrades a toon’s effective level when in areas substantially below your actual level. Whilst this means a toon can pick up experience in any zone, it may quite likely discourage some to replay…

      However, each race in GW2 looks to have such a different story that avoiding ‘map’ completion on one toon will certainly leave a unique experience available for subsequent toon(s) providing they are of a different race (and class?).

      In conclusion, I think maybe I’ll change tack on my elementalist and aim to progress through the game by sticking to on-level areas. I can re-visit earlier areas later if I feel the urge, or more likely, roll new characters to run through those areas separately (Woot! Replayability!).

      Cheers mate!

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